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Some thoughts on value, utility, and high-dollar guitars


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It's whatever floats your boat, if you can afford it why not?  As has been previously mentioned, you only live once and if you don't spend it your kids will.  Who wants to die a rich man?

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I can disprove that hypothesis in five seconds or less 

Rich men.

Donno really.. I, as most of you know got a 336 not long ago..  That was 3k (second hand).. Why... Cos I wanted it and for once in my life could actually afford it.. Ever since I first tried

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19 hours ago, NighthawkChris said:

I don’t think people get gear crazy about pianos and such - like having multiples - generally speaking, but mine cost a lot more money than a super high end Gibson guitar. But again I’ve been playing for the better part of 30 years and it is worth it. Yes could have bought some junker sitting in someone’s basement for the better part of the 1950s but I wanted something better than a novice instrument. There are some pianos that cost more than your and my house combined, but I choose to get a new piano which has literally no resale value. We are talking about an instrument that weighs A TON! Usually you’re calling in movers to get that thing where it will live in your home. Point is that we all spend our money on BS and instruments are again my crutch. I enjoy playing in bands and just a music lover as big as they come. So I look at these as a different sort of investment in myself rather than monetary. And FYI I own an upright Boston because I don’t have a big enough house for a grand haha! It sure beats your grandmas spinnet haha!

yea,, good Pianos are definitely a long term investment.  I would love a baby grand, room and budget get in the way.  I have a few really good sounding yahama's 88 key digital pianos.  

They aint the real thing, but they do feel and sound good enough to get me where I need to go.

Drums are another instrument that you can really get in deep with.  My son is a fantastic player.  he plays DWs and has a few sets,  They set him back a good hunk.

then there's recording gear, and that can be a whole new level too.

OTOH, ever price a Harley???

 

 

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9 minutes ago, IanHenry said:

It's whatever floats your boat, if you can afford it why not?  As has been previously mentioned, you only live once and if you don't spend it your kids will.  Who wants to die a rich man?

I agree. Our In-laws are very rich,  they won't say. But Mark told our son he could buy Ferrari out of business and still have million's.  He doesn't flaunt it but his wife does. She will go shopping for clothes and fly her 3 daughters up for the event. She picks a fancy shop and its open just for her and her daughters, no one else. Must be nice? 

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If you like collecting, then collect. It's a personal decision.

Saxophone players treat mouthpieces like guitarists treat guitars. I know of guys with dozens of mouthpieces.

But IMO guitars are much better for collecting because they look better than saxophone mouthpieces 😉

Celine Dion and a few other female stars have over 2,000 pairs of shoes (or so I've read).

We all do what we like with our money.

I'm a minimalist in possessions by my nature. I like quality but I have my point on the scale of diminishing returns, usually where I feel quality starts to turn into luxury.

I spend my money on vacation memories. I've been to 49 out of 50 US states, Puerto Rico, St. Thomas, St. Croix & St John (USVI), more than half the Canadian provinces, 7 Mexican states, Bahama Islands, Bermuda Islands, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Saint-Martin/Sint Maarten, Jamaica, Cayman Islands, England, Scotland, Wales, Gibraltar, The Netherlands, Hungary, Spain, Italy, Morocco, Czech Republic, Austria, Australia, Russia, Japan and China (From the Great Wall down to Hong Kong).

I was planning on Madagascar in 2020, but COVID nuked that.

Insights and incites by Notes

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I do seem to recall a trend in the '90's of dudes in post-punk bands would hunt down cheap-o axes claiming they dug their crude sound.  Things like old Silvertones and Airlines.  And speaking of old cheapies,   my one and only electric was a  '67 Kalamazoo KG ....  This thing here......

https://www.vintageguitarandbass.com/adDetails/431

Had that same "tabletop" amp too.  [biggrin]  The amp died sometime in '68 and have no idea what became of the guitar.  

Whitefang

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24 minutes ago, Notes_Norton said:

Danelctros were big when I was a kid

I owned a '63 4021 in 1977 and owned it again in 1993. Around 2005 or so I started looking for it. Want ad after want ad, reward offered, the whole thing. Why? Can't answer that. I won't pretend to be sane or rational.

Last April I found it in California. Guy had to thin the herd because of COVID lack of employment. It's back home. 

 

2 hours ago, kidblast said:

OTOH, ever price a Harley???

Another "holy grail".  In 2011 I bought a 2000 883 Sportster with 7709 miles for $2500 cash. I had finally "arrived".

Ten years later it has 8432 miles. It's loud, steers like a tank, has the turning radius of a Greyhound bus, and according to other Harley riders, it's a "girl's bike". 

A couple years ago I was given a 1981 Honda CB750K. Yes, the signal lights were all broken off, it had a homemade sissy bar, the grab rail had been chopped apart, the headlight bucket is distorted.... but it runs great. I've amassed original parts to replace the damaged stuff and I might have $300 invested. Maybe another $200 if I pull the trigger on a nice original seat on ebay. 

I will bet a Happy Meal the Honda will get ridden this summer while the snob bike sits in the shade.

As to pianos, well, I just noodle on them. I don't "play". I do have an 88 key Casio digital with weighted keys and all that. But right beside it is a 1972 Baldwin (Howard?) spinet that was $50 delivered. I tweak it if one note gets so bad it hurts to hear it. I know it's a pariah but I like it. It's the Charlie Brown Christmas Tree of pianos.

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9 minutes ago, ksdaddy said:

I owned a '63 4021 in 1977 and owned it again in 1993. Around 2005 or so I started looking for it. Want ad after want ad, reward offered, the whole thing. Why? Can't answer that. I won't pretend to be sane or rational.

Last April I found it in California. Guy had to thin the herd because of COVID lack of employment. It's back home. 

 

Another "holy grail".  In 2011 I bought a 2000 883 Sportster with 7709 miles for $2500 cash. I had finally "arrived".

Ten years later it has 8432 miles. It's loud, steers like a tank, has the turning radius of a Greyhound bus, and according to other Harley riders, it's a "girl's bike". 

A couple years ago I was given a 1981 Honda CB750K. Yes, the signal lights were all broken off, it had a homemade sissy bar, the grab rail had been chopped apart, the headlight bucket is distorted.... but it runs great. I've amassed original parts to replace the damaged stuff and I might have $300 invested. Maybe another $200 if I pull the trigger on a nice original seat on ebay. 

I will bet a Happy Meal the Honda will get ridden this summer while the snob bike sits in the shade.

As to pianos, well, I just noodle on them. I don't "play". I do have an 88 key Casio digital with weighted keys and all that. But right beside it is a 1972 Baldwin (Howard?) spinet that was $50 delivered. I tweak it if one note gets so bad it hurts to hear it. I know it's a pariah but I like it. It's the Charlie Brown Christmas Tree of pianos.

ha!  the pariah of pianos!  Love it!! 

We bought a house that had a Marshall Weston upright.  We called in a piano tuner.  Guy was probably well into his 70s,  about 6 foot 6 inches, hands all a mess from arthritis,  tuned it by ear using a tuning fork, "you see now, we gotta tune it flat, other wise, we're gonna be replacing strings.  You're a guitar player right, you can tune to anything!"   yep..   

He spent 3 hours tuning it, sat down and started banging out rag time like he was born to do it. 

That was my first piano, it came out in pieces, in around 2010 when my son wanted to use the room/space for recording gear.

The guy I play in a band with, his (ex) Father in law owns a huge dealer ship in town.   He has about 10 of his own in a garage where his house is.  some of those bad boys had to go into the $40k range
 

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I wish I had a big old building where I could just line them up. I see people giving away wonderful old pianos every day. 

Reprobate Piano Safe Harbor.

I have been offered a beautiful 1906 Ivers & Pond upright for free. It belonged to a piano teacher and has spent close to the last 10 years inside the local music store, being used for lessons. It has been tuned a couple times a year and maintained. She moved away and the new teacher wants to be digital. 

If I go for it, I will hire a moving company. Not willing to risk damage.

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1 minute ago, ksdaddy said:

I wish I had a big old building where I could just line them up. I see people giving away wonderful old pianos every day. 

Reprobate Piano Safe Harbor.

I have been offered a beautiful 1906 Ivers & Pond upright for free. It belonged to a piano teacher and has spent close to the last 10 years inside the local music store, being used for lessons. It has been tuned a couple times a year and maintained. She moved away and the new teacher wants to be digital. 

If I go for it, I will hire a moving company. Not willing to risk damage.

yea,, that's the way to do it for sure.  Probably have to get it retuned too.  

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@kidblast @ksdaddy

Pianos need to be tuned regularly and played to stay in good shape.  Pianos that have sat in a basement (temp controls and such?), take up a lot of space, and weigh a ton, how's the pinblock looking - i.e. holding tune on the strings?  How's the soundboard looking?  Action, etc.  Last time tuned?  You really have to know what to look for when buying used I suppose - sort of like anything.  Other than that, might be hauling a massive piece of firewood home doing the other guy a favor.  What a pain! 

My piano stays upstairs as a main piece of furniture, maintained regularly - tuned, adjusted by piano tech.  I will maintain my guitars, but I don't touch the piano whatsoever to tweak it.  The fellow who helps me out does such a great job it's worth it to be graced by his presence.  Not all guys are so good though...  But I even have a nice luthier for my guitar needs from time to time with the "big" jobs - frets and stuff I don't mess with.  So it plays reliably good, sounds nice and rich, and if it's your thing, any serious musician eventually should invest in an instrument that continues to inspire IMHO.  I may have a guitar too many, but I like them and hope to give them to my kids one day.  So always need an even number of guitars to split between the 2.  Love it when I have an odd count of guitars, haha! 

Hey, music's fun, I enjoy it for myself and playing and sharing it with others.  Glad to have a discussion about pianos for a minute. 

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It is a treat to play a well tuned/maintained acoustic piano. 

We were guests at a wedding a few years ago.  Cocktail hour had everyone in this big opened lounge area. 

There was a gorgeous Yamaha baby grand, I was admiring it ,  one of the hostess for the hotel the reception was at said, if you want to play it, go ahead, I don't think any one would mind it's not locked. 

I swallowed my inhibitions, and  sat down to play.  it was a delight.  I would love to have taken that baby home.

 

 

The music directory are our church has an upright Steinway,  gets tuned at least twice a year.    The one thing I do appreciate with digital pianos is the lack of a need to tune them.  I can't stand playing a piano out of tune

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@kidblast, Yamaha makes some very fine pianos.  Top notch stuff right there.  Glad you had a chance to use something that was finely crafted to understand what a good piano can do. 

@Notes_Norton, I prefer a real piano to play technical "classical" music.  But mostly, in a band, you need a keyboard as we know.  It would be nice if we could pack up our pianos to head down to the gig, haha! 

But no, my Yamaha Motif ES8 back from the early 2000s I believe is still living and has very rich voices.  Weighs a ton, but nowhere near the weight of an actual piano obviously.  I have been using my (Yamaha) MM8 for gigging.  Weighs less than 50lbs in the case and much easier to transport than the Motif.  The MM8 does the trick - except organ voices.  They are awful - let's just say that.  Then again, could dump some more money into a voice rack...  Basically start costing the same as high-end keyboards at that point when you add up the costs...  And more stuff to hook up...  Well, always a used market, but still not necessarily cheap to get this gear. 

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They used to be given away a long time ago in the UK.   When I was a kid,  piano-smashing competitions were part of many village and town fetes and fairs.   There would be a couple of old uprights and at a signal 2 teams with sledgehammers would compete to see how quickly they could reduce them to matchwood; ivory and ebony keys and all.   It seems criminal now.

I was forced to learn piano from age 7 or 8.  It was 1961 or '62 and in those days the teacher used a ruler to hit the back of my hands whenever I went wrong.  I tried to learn, had to read both clefs, but the punishment removed any motivation (let alone enjoyment) and I came to dread it, and gave up as soon as I was allowed...made my Dad angry.  Then at  the next school they offered me classical guitar lessons.  I remembered the ruler over the back of my hands and said no.

We had an upright at home.  I kept it after my Dad died but I still didn't want to play it, and eventually it was too big and in the way.  By then there were people who would pick them up and take them away (to refurbish, repair and resell) and I think I got £70 or more for it, which was a lot of money to me in the early 80s and a little compensation for what I'd been put through.

 

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1 hour ago, jdgm said:

They used to be given away a long time ago in the UK.   When I was a kid,  piano-smashing competitions were part of many village and town fetes and fairs.   There would be a couple of old uprights and at a signal 2 teams with sledgehammers would compete to see how quickly they could reduce them to matchwood; ivory and ebony keys and all.   It seems criminal now.

I was forced to learn piano from age 7 or 8.  It was 1961 or '62 and in those days the teacher used a ruler to hit the back of my hands whenever I went wrong.  I tried to learn, had to read both clefs, but the punishment removed any motivation (let alone enjoyment) and I came to dread it, and gave up as soon as I was allowed...made my Dad angry.  Then at  the next school they offered me classical guitar lessons.  I remembered the ruler over the back of my hands and said no.

We had an upright at home.  I kept it after my Dad died but I still didn't want to play it, and eventually it was too big and in the way.  By then there were people who would pick them up and take them away (to refurbish, repair and sell) and I think I got £70 or more for it, which was a lot of money to me in the early 80s and a little compensation for what I'd been put through.

 

The torture never stops. Yeah torture as a mean of motivation is not the way to make people learn. Can you imagine if after sex you were flogged how much it would make  you would want to do it?

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I loved Thin Lizzy, and their one radio hit. 

Phil Lynott seemed like an interesting Englishman, raised in Ireland, and proudly so. 

His Signature bass can be yours for just a few paychecks. 

😑

https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/PBassCSLEPL--fender-custom-shop-limited-edition-phil-lynott-precision-bass-black-relic?utm_source=criteo&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=lowerfunnelnew&utm_content=display&utm_term=300x250&dclid=CKDjx62exe8CFYkzwQodIUsNFg

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My Baldwin is actually my third piano. In 2005 I bought a 1941 Powers apartment piano, looked like an upright but only had 66 keys. Paid $70 for it. It was painted gold, and under that it was red, and under that it was white. i kept it around for a few years and it eventually got in the way while I was doing some remodeling in the "too small to begin with" house, and I gave it away.

In 2012 I was given a 1920 Mendellsshon upright. It was delivered free of charge and he even helped me take it down cellar. Yeah, I know, a cellar isn't ideal. One day I was vacuuming the dust off the keys with a huge shop vac and sucked about 6 ivories right off the keys. I opened the bag up and found all but one. I have no idea how I couldn't find the last one.  Not long afterwards a junk dealing friend showed up to pick up some metal and he had a trashed upright on a trailer. It had been down cellar in a grange hall and the basement flooded. I banged out a few bad notes (ones that still worked) and then began popping ivory caps off the keys so I would have spares !

But I run hot and cold with pianos, and during a cold spell I hooked an engine hoist onto a pole in my garage and pulled it up the cellar steps into my garage. I gave it to a 13 year old girl who was ecstatic. That was 2018. I rued the day I got rid of it and swore it would never happen again. If I was tired of it being around, I should have thrown a quilt over it and moved it to a dark corner until I was in the mood again.

Last summer someone was giving away a spinet. Because it was free, everyone and their grandmother's dog was replying to their facebook ad. I messaged the guy and he said he'd deliver it the next day for free IF he still had it. I said I'd give him $50 to make sure he still had it. It was win/win. It sat in the garage all summer and I would sit down and noodle on it. Plunk, there's a C chord.... plunk, there's F... plunk, there's G... wait, lemme add the extra F note to make it a 7th..... plunk! And so it went, all summer. My son in law and I moved it down cellar before winter. Spinets are a lot easier to move than regular uprights. It was like we were moving a couch.

I am the piano equivalent of the trailer park guy who has a 20 year old Oscar Schmidt acoustic with 1/2" action and 10-46 electric strings and he just figured out the chords to a couple Garth Brooks songs.

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I took up the guitar as an older beginner back in February 2016 (I was 47 at the time), and that the time, I had an old Epiphone Les Paul that would never stay in tune (I first purchased this Epiphone back in 2001 when I had previously taken up the guitar, but quit in frustration).

However, in February 2016, I discovered this brilliant guitar teacher on YouTube who gave detailed tutorials on how to play the rhythm part of well over 40 AC/DC songs. Accordingly, I downloaded his lessons on my PC, and it was then I made a serious commitment to learn how to play some of my favourite AC/DC songs from start to finish.  After I learned how to play (the rhythm part, lead guitar is too hard me),my very first AC/DC song, it gave me the confidence to learn even more songs, so I rewarded myself by buying a brand new Gibson Les Paul Studio in April 2016, which I still have and play to this day.

As I learned to play even more songs, I can play some Pearl Jam, Airborne, Neil Young songs (just the rhythm part), I bought another Gibson Les Paul ie Classic (2017), and a 2019 Gibson Les Paul Standard 60’s, and they have all been great guitars to play, and just looking at a Gibson Les Paul just makes you want to pick one up.

To be honest, I’m hardly the best rhythm  guitar player (far from it), but I don’t regret paying significant amounts of money for the three Gibson Les Pauls I own, they look good, sound great (especially when plugged into a Marshall), and learning the guitar has given me tremendous enjoyment and stress relief. 
 

Once again, I don’t mean to sound boastful, as I’m only a rhythm player with limited ability,  but now I can play the rhythm part of over 100 mostly AC/DC songs, I’m not very good, but what I play is at least recognisable. None the less, my initial goal was just to be able to play one of my favourite songs from start to finish, now that’s grown to over 100 (this took daily practice since February 2016).

If you make the commitment to learn a musical instrument ie.the guitar , you don’t want to buy something too cheap that you don’t enjoy playing, you want something decent that you enjoy playing.

Sorry for the long winded rant.

 

 

 

 

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12 hours ago, sparquelito said:

I loved Thin Lizzy, and their one radio hit. 

Phil Lynott seemed like an interesting Englishman, raised in Ireland, and proudly so. 

His Signature bass can be yours for just a few paychecks. 

😑

https://www.sweetwater.com/store/detail/PBassCSLEPL--fender-custom-shop-limited-edition-phil-lynott-precision-bass-black-relic?utm_source=criteo&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=lowerfunnelnew&utm_content=display&utm_term=300x250&dclid=CKDjx62exe8CFYkzwQodIUsNFg

TL were such a killer band. After China Town they went down hill fast. But if you get the bass you for over 12k you get this junk too. The case is probably rock solid, but WTF.

  • Custom-made Anvil case
  • Signature leather strap
  • Studded wrist band
  • Mirrored aviation sunglasses
  • Certificate of authenticity
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To SEB1968

 

That's OK.  Your last part up there makes sense.  I tried to get my two daughters interested in playing guitar and bought a cheap-o acoustic at a local shop for $25.   But idiot me didn't think to get one with nylon strings so they wouldn't be as hard on their little fingers as steel strings and discourage them, which is what happened.

And don't worry about not playing AC/DC rhythms perfectly.  At least you're playing and can move on to learning better music  [wink]

My philosophy is----

Whether you just learn three chord tunes or some with more, the important thing is that you're making music!

And that's always a beautiful thing.  [smile]

Whitefang

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My grandmother played ragtime piano on this out-of-tune upright.  She'd take the sheet music and turn it upside down and tell us she could read it that way.  😄

One time she told us she had to make sure her teeth weren't in upside down or she might chew herself to pieces.  

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